Aspire Sports and Cultural Trust is governed by a Board of up to eleven Trustees who give strategic guidance and support to the Trust’s Management Team, which is led by the Chief Executive.
The Trustees are all representatives of the local community and bring a wealth of experience and expertise to the organisation with representatives from health, education, business, community organisations, the voluntary sector and Gloucester City Council.
Bio to follow
Bio to follow
Having taken early retirement from my career in Higher Education administration I have been involved in activities that support the communities in my adopted city. I am active in the co-operative movement and appreciate a values driven organisation. I am now somewhat of an armchair enthusiast sports wise, but, in my youth, I was a keen athlete and have been known to play cricket!
I was attracted to becoming involved with Aspire because of its values and contribution to the well being of people in Gloucestershire. Becoming a Trustee has offered me the opportunity to learn about the Leisure industry and fully use the skills and expertise gained in my career. There are many challenges in todays society and I am proud to be a part of an organisation that is trying to address some of these.
Neil is currently a Gloucester City Councillor and is a former Mayor of the city. He is a qualified District Nurse and at present is studying for his PhD at Birmingham University researching alternative models for the delivery of social care in the community. He was a school governor for over 20 years at four of the city’s schools. He served as Chair of Governors at two of these schools and acted as chair for the sports hall facilities which included swimming and dry side activities at one of Gloucester’s secondary schools.
Neil is passionate about the history and heritage of Gloucester. He is a trustee of the Gloucester Historic Buildings Ltd. Neil is also a trustee of several other charitable organisations which include Longfield, (hospice at home) and Gloucestershire Community Nurses’ Fund, and is an ambassador for Alabare, (homes for veterans). Neil is also actively involved with Gloucestershire Young Carers and Charlies. He brings all this experience to support the work at Aspire.
Paul Toleman was born in Gloucester where his first school was Calton Road infants and then primary followed by Sir Thomas Rich’s. He then went onto 20 years in the building industry as a Regional Sales Manager for 2 large national companies before running his own business as an interior designer.
He was elected onto the City Council Westgate ward in 2011 where he retained his seat in 2015 and again in 2016. He has been on the planning committee ever since and was on the board of Gloucester City Homes until recently and was pleased to say that following the stock transfer from the City Council to become an independent housing provider he was re-selected onto the board after being assessed for his skills and ability. He was also a governor of the 2gether NHS foundation trust.
Rugby was always his favourite sport and he played for Old Richians until he was 50 as well as a spell with Gloucester RFC back in the 70s.
Martyn is a retired Director of a medium-sized locally-based caravan retailer.
He was a Gloucester City Councillor from 1998-2011and from 2004-2011 Cabinet Member responsible for the City’s Heritage and Leisure portfolio, devolving management of Gloucester City Leisure Services to Aspire from the City Council in 2008.
Martyn has a very strong interest in Gloucester’s history and Heritage and is a member of the Gloucester Regeneration Advisory Board. He is also a member of the Council of Management of Gloucester Civic Trust and Chairman of Gloucester Historic Buildings Ltd., a joint venture of Gloucester City Council and Gloucester Civic Trust. Martyn is a Trustee of other charities including Gloucester Charities Trust, of which he was Chairman until January 2016, Gloucester Athletics Track Management Ltd, Llanthony Secunda Priory Trust. An active member of Gloucester Rotary Club, Martyn is Chairman of its Trust Fund for Young People and lead organiser of the Club’s annual Tree of Light in conjunction with Gloucester City Council.
Chris Rawlins’ background is in aerospace manufacturing operations and change management, nationally and internationally. He started his first business in sportswear retail in 2003 in Gloucester. In 2013, Chris started Sofab Sports CIC, a social enterprise which creates inclusive employment and participation in UK sport. In 2017, having created twenty nine jobs, alongside developing the largest inclusive football club in the UK and sustainable without funding or public sector contracts, Sofab took on social investment to support growth. One year on turnover has trebled. Chris is a nationally recognised advocate of social enterprise speaking alongside the Minister for Small Business at the Global Entrepreneurs Week in 2014 and the Minister for Disabilities in 2018 as well as numerous local and national conferences. Sofab has won many awards, featured on regional and national television and been a case study for Companies House and Unltd. Chris is a regular user of the gym facilities at GL1 and has played too many football matches on Plock Court to recall.